Mary Jones aka Peter Sewally of New York City was put on trial June 11th 1836 for pick pocketing a wallet containing 99$ from a white john with whom she had done business with the night before.
During their arrest Mary had attempted to throw out two additional wallets hidden in their bosom and the police upon taking Mary’s key and entering their home found dozens more wallets, watches and trinkets belonging to dozens of the cities male Upperclass whom although knowing Mary had stolen from them had become fearful to report to police least their vices be known to an increasingly moral conservative public.
Upon Mary’s interrogation and strip search it was discovered they were born as a man and had created a leather device in the shape and form of a vagina tied around their waist to keep clients from learning Mary’s T and birth sex (Although there is some dispute that the men were well aware of her male identity that she performed in the daytime)
On trial (in as far as I know) in the earliest known first person account of Queer life in United States Mary Jones went on record stating :

"I have been in the practice of waiting upon Girls of ill fame and made up their Beds and received the Company at the door and received the money for Rooms &c and they induced me to dress in Women’s Clothes, saying I looked so much better in them and I have always attended parties among the people of my own Colour dressed in this way — and in New Orleans I always dressed in this way"

 In so doing Mary Jones explained that there existed an active and known community of what would now be called gays, transsexuals, and drag queens in both the most populated city in United States and the blackest city in the United States during the pre-Emancipation era populated solely by black and mixed race people.
Of course Mary was convicted of Grand Larceny imprisoned for five years but not before being humiliated during trial and her image sensationalized by the press. Additionally days after their initial release Mary was sentenced a second time to Sing-Sing for a five month period for daring to walk about in female attire again before finally disappearing from the records.
It can be argued that this community of which Mary belonged to was the foundation of the later Black Drag Cakewalk balls known in late 19th century New York City, the queer rent parties and gay social life of 1920’s Harlem and eventually the Ballroom/Vogue community formed in the 1940’s to Present.
Although their life was marred in controversy caused by the multipronged discrimination so common for black gender and sexually variant people (then and now) for exisiting out, open and matter of factly Mary Jones was able to create a “beginning” for recorded black Queer life and history in this nation.

'A Worthy Ballad To Sing A Graphic Love Song' – Mack, Sienkiewicz, Allred And Many More On Little Nemo: Dream Another Dream - Bleeding Cool Comic Book, Movie, TV News


33 hours to go 

I can’t front, I was more than a little hung over when I wrote this. But yo, Kickstarter is winding down! Get in on that if it’s your thing.


The Remarkable Detective Noble: Former Slave, Drummer Boy, Union Soldier, and Trailblazing Sleuth. 

In mid-July 1870, the lead detective in the Great New Orleans Kidnapping Case, John Baptiste Jourdain, received a tip that a former slave named Rosa Lee knew of the whereabouts of the kidnappers he sought. Because policemen were “invariably met with silence and suspicion” in black neighborhoods, Jourdain hoped he could dress in workman’s clothes and trick Lee into divulging what she knew about the case. As a light-skinned Creole of color from a privileged background,  Jourdain would need to play his role well by adopting the mannerisms of a freedman. To lend authenticity to his disguise, Jourdain brought along gray-haired Detective Jordan Noble who, at age seventy-two, was the oldest man on the force and one of the few former slaves in the ranks of the Metropolitan Police.
Detective Noble was famous in New Orleans and perhaps an odd choice for an undercover assignment. Born into slavery in Georgia, Noble had earned his freedom after serving as Andrew Jackson’s drummer boy at the Battle of New Orleans during the War of 1812. He later accompanied Louisiana troops in the Everglades during the Seminole War, as well as serving as drummer for the elite New Orleans-based Washington Artillery during the Mexican War. In the 1850s, Noble regularly marched with his drum in patriotic parades alongside white veterans who nicknamed him “Old Jordan.” When the Civil War began, he helped organize one of the regiments that volunteered to fight with the Confederacy, but he later switched sides and served in the Union ranks. Like Jourdain, Noble seized the opportunity during Reconstruction to join the Metropolitan Police as a detective, and despite Noble’s celebrity Jourdain believed that he and Noble, like the famous French detectives they emulated, could be “masters of disguise.”
Dressed in grubby work clothes, the two detectives made their way to the neighborhood near the back-swamps where Rosa Lee lived. When they found her standing outside of her house, the detectives’ deception began.
❝ One day in the early 1920s, a young Ernest Hemingway rushed along the streets of Paris seeking shelter from a downpour. He soon came upon a warm cafe on the Place St.-Michel and ducked inside. After hanging his rain jacket, Hemingway ordered a café au lait, pulled out a notepad and pencil from his pocket and began writing. Before long he had fallen into a trancelike state, oblivious to his surroundings as he penned a story that would later become the first chapter of his memoir, “A Moveable Feast.” If Hemingway were alive in 2014, he might not have finished what he started writing that day. Realistically, he probably wouldn’t have even put a pen to paper. Instead, he might have ducked into the cafe, pulled out his smartphone and proceeded to waste an entire afternoon on social media.
Reclaiming Our (Real) Lives From Social Media - (via nedhepburn)

(via nedhepburn)

Strange coincidence. 

NYC, 1985 by Ferdinando Scianna

Frank Sinatra | Summer Wind

(Source: acollectionoftunes, via louxosenjoyables)